When I was teaching, I was astounded at how many five year olds couldn’t use a pair of scissors. Us teachers would spend hours trying to ‘fill the gaps’ and try to teach them a skill we assumed they would have mastered or at least had experience with before coming to school.
Now I’m a parent I’ve spent the last year hiding the scissors from my toddler. Could you imagine the damage a little boy on the move could cause with a pair of scissors? Plus it took him long enough to grow hair, I’m happy for him to keep it not style it his own way.
What a contradiction! The teacher who expects a child to use scissors with ease versus the parent who is scared of arming their child with that kind of weapon.
Time to meet somewhere in the middle. Under INTENSE supervision Carter has been learning how to use scissors. He’s 2 and a half now and understands that they can only be used when mum or dad are around and he’s enjoying destroying, I mean cutting all the paper he can find. At the moment I’m giving him the freedom to cut any way he likes (later on I will introduce sheets with lines and the focus will become more refined). This week we cut out different foods and labelled them (mummy cut out the blueberries picture to show him what to do), combining some literacy with the cutting activity. He needs some assistance but he’s already gaining some control over the scissors which will later help him when holding a pencil and beginning to write.
Using scissors encourages the fingers to work together, much like holding a pencil does, so by cutting Carter is strengthening these muscles in his fingers as well as his hand whilst also increasing his fine motor skills.
So yes, under close supervision it will benefit your toddler to teach them how to use scissors. Maybe store them on a top shelf though…just in case they become too confident 😉